The Best Houseplants for Beginners
By Jessie Winter
Adding greenery to an indoor space is a great way to liven it up and boost your mood. They are also a good option for those who do not have yard space available for gardening.
Anyone can grow healthy houseplants - after all, no one is born with a green thumb. It takes trial and error while also having the correct care information to find what houseplants will work best for your space.
When you bring your plant home it's important to find the correct lighting.
If the plant isn't getting enough light it will either grow tall and leggy searching for more light or just not grow at all. Too much direct light can burn or bleach the leaves. A general rule of thumb is that most houseplants thrive in a window where they get a few hours of morning sun and then bright indirect light the rest of the day.
Once you find the right lighting for your plant, the next step is to understand what type of watering your plant requires. Different types of plants have different watering needs. Some plants like to dry out completely, some like to mostly dry out and some like to being kept slightly moist at all times. If you're watering too frequently, this can lead to root rot while under watering can lead to dried up roots. Make sure to have drainage holes in the pot so the excess water is able to pass through. Most houseplants do best in a well draining soil mixture that isn't too dense.
The Best "Starter" Houseplants
There are many different types of houseplants but making sure to find the type that will thrive in your space is key. Here is a guide to help you find some of the best low maintenance houseplants for beginners...
Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)
This beautiful dark green foliage plant with white flowers likes a bright indirect light. Keep the soil consistently moist but not soggy. It also can be quite dramatic and lay completely flat when it's more than ready for watering.
Pothos (Epipremnum aureum)
This plant has many names including Devils Ivy and is dubbed an impossible plant to kill. It's very forgiving and can even tolerate some shaded areas. It's a fast grower with its long extending vines. It does best in bright indirect light while making sure to keep the soil slightly moist but not soggy.
Snake Plant (Sansevieria)
If you're looking for a low maintenance plant consider a Snake Plant. It will happily withstand full sun as well as low light. The Snake Plant only needs to be watered every 10-14 days allowing its soil to completely dry out between waterings to prevent overwatering and root rot. During the winter months you'll only need to water once a month.
Dracaenas are popular plants that require very little care, which can be appealing for beginners. They are easy to grow and can even tolerate low light. The Dracaena prefers bright indirect light but can adapt to low light. It will need to dry out completely before watering, which is about every 10-14 days depending on its size.
Spider Plant (Chlorophytum comosum)
This plant get its name from the long offshoots that resemble baby spiders. It thrives in a bright indirect light. Water when the top inch of soil is dry, which is about once a week. It sits nicely on a shelf or in a hanging basket so it's baby offshoots can dangle down.
Chinese Evergreen (Aglaonema)
The Chinese Evergreen likes a bright indirect light but tends to tolerate low light conditions very well. Let the top inch of soil dry out before watering, which is about every 7-10 days.
Inch Plant (Tradescantia)
Make sure to give plenty of bright indirect light for this fun plant to keep its stripes. Water when the top inch of soil is dry and don't let the soil get too dry between waterings. Pinch back leggy stems to encourage new growth.